Years ago while I was having coffee with her, I had the biggest laugh at the thought of a Mayor Nancy Gardner, and judging by the uncomfortable look on her face as I said it, I knew right there that she will make a GREAT Mayor.
Not the kind of Mayor who shows up at the Mayor’s Reception wearing a Crown and holding a Scepter.
Not the kind of Mayor who, in an effort to get out of Jury Duty, tells the Judge that without his constant presence in the City of Newport Beach, the City would fall apart (that’s a funny TRUE story by the way … ask me about it).
But the kind of reluctant Mayor, sort of how Councilman Ed Selich handled the big seat for two consecutive terms, who will not let ego get in the way of true public service.
The kind of Mayor who does not act BIGGER than the City and doesn’t let the power overinflate his or her ego.
No, the Mayor of Newport Beach is someone who is the City, from the Harbor to the Beaches, from the Bay to the Airport.
The Mayor of Newport Beach needs to be someone just like Nancy Gardner.
How did the year of Mayor Mike Henn go?
Just like how Henn is, very unassuming, very mellow and very under the radar.
His biggest blip/exposure came when discussing the $200,000 lifeguards with Fox News (http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/983560441001/lifeguard-pensions-cause-concern-at-newport-beach/?playlist_id=87247). His very unassuming, very mellow and very under radar demeanor quickly changed to a “Deer in the Headlights” look when Fox’s talking heads made Mayor Mike deviate from his prepared, and very well-rehearsed, statements.
Even I felt bad for Mayor Mike when that happened, and as many people could attest, I’m a cold-hearted, uncaring bastard.
Sure, he may have broken some City Council policy. Sure he voted for the “Bridge to Nowhere” after calling it the “Bridge to Nowhere” earlier in the same year. But overall, Mayor Mike did good.
But as I wrote last year in my masterpiece, “And Now, Mayor Mike (http://newportindy.com/2010/12/17/now-mayor-mike/)” I truly cannot wait for the Year of the Nancy, which will begin when the Newport Beach City Council does its annual Changing-of-the-Mayor-Hat vote this month.
Other than with former Mayor Pro Tem, current Councilwoman, and current 74th Assembly District candidate Leslie Daigle, typically the Mayor Pro Tem becomes Mayor, and although I may not be able to predict the future as well as Newport Beach’s Public Works Director Steve Badum, I think the safe bet would be that this tradition will continue with the Year of the Nancy.
So what should happen in the year of the Nancy?
Hopefully not too many crazy environmental attempts at: Banning Fire Pits, Banning Running Cars, Banning Air, Banning Water, and Banning Basic Movement without Government Control …
But at least I know that Mayor Nancy will be doing her best to bring Echo Beach back. I know that Mayor Nancy will be a Pragmatist and I know that Mayor Nancy will be great at listening to ALL of the residents’ concerns … even Bob Rush’s … without making faces or off-color remarks (even if the microphones aren’t hot).
But perhaps most importantly, I know that Mayor Nancy will be fair and not under the radar like Mayor Mike, not regal like Mayor Keith, not overbearing and impatient like Mayor Steve.
I know that Mayor Nancy will BE Newport Beach, the same way that she WAS Newport Beach even before she got to the dais. Caring about the waves, the bay, the Harbor, while at the same time being Fiscally Conservative to keep Newport Beach’s debt spending at a minimum.
Now if only she could lay off banning things …